PUPILS at Medstead Primary School proved that books certainly can ‘Keep Youngsters out of Mischief’ after 96 of them signed up to this summer’s reading challenge at Alton Library.

According to library assistant Sue Blackbourn, of those 68 completed the six-book challenge – which was double the number of finishers in last year’s initiative.

In offering her congratulations, Ms Blackbourn said of the Medstead result: “I think this result reflects how much the school and staff encouraged the children’s participation.”

In recognition of Medstead as the school with the highest number of finishers in the Alton Library challenge, the knitted Dennis figure that toured the area’s schools to promote this year’s theme of ‘Mischief Makers’, along with a fun cut-out figure of Dennis the Menace, have been awarded to the school.

The children were said to be delighted to receive the images, which will be displayed in Medstead School’s well-resourced library, with the knitted Dennis hiding among the books each day for children visiting the library to spot.

Headteacher Jane Oborn said: “Our teachers are all very passionate about reading, we have our own treasure boxes of books that are special to us in each classroom which the children aspire to read. Our weekly school newsletter regularly features ‘Ms Oborn’s Recommended Reads’ for both children and parents.

“This year we linked the Summer Reading Challenge to our Story Wings Scheme which we participate in along with the seven Alresford area Primary Schools and Perins. Children could count some of their Summer Reading Challenge books towards their Story Wings badges. Children need to read books across seven different genres to attain their wings, encouraging them to broaden the range of books they read, rather than getting stuck on one author or type of book.”